ThorCon is a graphite-moderated thermal spectrum molten salt reactor that will produce 250 MWe power. It will be cheaper than coal energy. Coal is 5 cents per kilowatt hour and Thorcon will be 3 cents per kilowatt-hour. The basic concept is similar to the MSRE (Molten Salt Reactor Experiment) in ORNL which was built and operated in the 1960s.
Thorcon is working with Indonesia and could have its first 1 GW commercial unit in 4-6 years.
ThorCon reactor is in a Can, which is simple and safe
• Safety is intrinsic from physics, not add-on safety systems; overheating stops chain reaction.
• Any break will drain reactor fuel to cold shutdown fuel salt drain tank.
• Decay heat is removed by silo cooling wall continuous passive water circulation, even in power blackout.
• Radioactive fuel salt at low, garden-hose pressure can’t disperse in catastrophe.
• Fluoride salt chemically locks up hazardous fission products iodine-131, cesium-137, strontium-90.
• Can operates for four years, then cools down for four years, and then is changed out.
• Each power module has two Cans housed in silos.
• Liquid fission plant comprises 1 to 4 power modules of 557 MW (thermal) generating 250 MW (electric).
• Four freeze valves will be used to ensure the passive shutdown in case of overheating
Super Low cost and mass production from today’s ship yards
ThorCon avoids three costly LWR issues: low temperature, high pressure, solid fuel.
• Thanks to high temperature, ThorCon uses the same, competitively-sourced, $500 / kW supercritical steam turbinegenerator as a modern coal plant.
• Thanks to low pressure, ThorCon avoids reinforced concrete mausoleum and 9-inch-thick forgings.
• Thanks to liquid fuel, ThorCon can move fuel around with a pump. No exacting fuel pin fabrication. No complex reshuffling refueling systems.
Competing Molten Salt fission companies in the USA
ThorCon – Measuring fuel salt ionic concentrations in operation, with Argonne Laboratory
Terrestrial Energy – Magnetic bearing molten salt pump
Elysium – Synthesis of molten chloride molten salt fast reactor fuel salt from spent nuclear fuel
Transatomic – Fuel salt characteristics, with Argonne